‘Reasons behind govt losing its stake in Taragaon Hotel should be investigated’

KATHMANDU, Sept 23: Ananda Prasad Pokhrel, CPN-UML leader, has urged the Parliamentary Public Account Committee (PAC) to seriously investigate the causes for government losing its stake in the five-star Taragaon Regency Hotel Limited, popularly known as Hayat Hotel.

The government had a 39 percent stake in Hayat in 1992 but now its stake is only about 9 percent. “Majority of shares have already been transferred to the Saraf and Shrestha families. They have misguided the government representatives of the company board and have been acquiring the shares for themselves,” said Pokhrel while speaking at an interaction program organized by the Reporters’ Club Nepal on Friday.

Hayat is a listed public limited company. Private partners Radeshyam Saraf and his family, who are Indian, and local entrepreneur Ram Lal Shrestha and family, as well as the companies in which they have stakes, now own most shares of the company. The Saraf and Shrestha families own 76 percent stake (18.8 million shares) in the company.

“If it continues, the government will lose its entire stakes in the Hotel. The PAC must take the issue seriously and investigate the reasons behind it. Its designers must be punished,” he added.